Cool Runnings

"One dream. Four Jamaicans. Twenty below zero."

Cool Runnings is about a group of Jamaican athletes who decide to form a bobsled team to compete in the Winter Olympics. The team is led Derice Bannock and his friend Sanka Coffie. Derice is an excellent sprinter who narrowly misses qualifying for the Summer Olympics in the 100-meter dash. He sees that Sanka has supreme skills at driving a go-cart and convinces him that driving a bobsled is no different. Sanka is skeptical of his friend because Jamaica has a very warm climate and rarely participates in winter sports.

Sanka is eventually talked into driving the bobsled, and the friends recruit Yul Brenner and Junior Bevil to complete the four-man team. The team builds a bobsled course and begins to train for the Olympics, but Derice knows that the group needs a good coach if they want to be taken seriously.

As luck would have it, Irving Blitzer is living on the island. Irving is an American Gold Medalist in the bobsled, but has retired to Jamaica after a cheating scandal has left him in disgrace. After years away from bobsled, Blitzer wants no part of the sport.

Derice continues to plead with Irving while his team raises money to compete in the Olympics. Since the country has no winter sports program, the team must resort to several outlandish ventures to raise the money to continue training. As Irving takes note of their efforts, he decides to coach the team, realizing the passion Derice and his teammates share for the sport.

The Jamaican bobsled team eventually qualifies for the Olympics in Calgary but when the team arrives in Canada they are treated with derision by the other competitors. At one point, an old enemy of Irving's tries to disqualify the team from the event, but Irving goes to bat for his team to keep them in the competition.

The Jamaicans perform poorly initially but are on pace to set a world record on the final day of competition. However, the group has yet another obstacle to overcome to prove that they belong among the world's elite bobsledding teams.

Ultimately, Cool Runnings is about perseverance in the face of adversity. The Jamaican bobsled team can serve as an inspiration for those that feel that they can not do something because the odds seem too great. The film also touts the benefit of getting a second chance and making the most of new opportunities.

PG
| 1993 | 1 hr 38 min | 6.9/10
Cast
Studio
Director
Jon Turteltaub
Language
English
Cool Runnings
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